Most people probably would think that becoming “An Antique Fine Art Collector” is beyond their budget. That is not true.
ANTIQUE FINE ART
Fine antique paintings are very expensive with many priced in the $millions. We are not talking about oil paintings. Our focus is on Antique Prints and Maps, many of which were after original paintings. Our antique prints were produced from the late 1500’s to the late 1800’s.
During that time period the production of prints was very time consuming and labor intensive. Each print was touched by the artisan and up until about 1800, they were printed on hand made paper. Coloring up until the end of the 19th century was done by hand. These functions would be very expensive today.
Many of these antique prints were produced by “Old Masters” who had shops of students learning the printmaking and coloring trades.
WHAT TO COLLECT
There are many choices including colored or uncolored, copper or steel engraving, lithograph or chromolithograph, mezzotint, aquatint and more. If you are interested in more information about how these varieties of prints are made, check out our “Print Making Techniques”.
Furthermore, you must decide what subject to collect. Several ideas are listed below:
• Prints of your “Home Town”.
• Maps of “Where Your Family Is From”
• Prints of “Your Ancestors” (Either real or pretend)
• Prints of “Where You Vacationed”.
• Prints of “Animals” similar to your pets.
• Prints of “Your Hobbies”
• Prints of “Works of Art”.
WHERE TO FIND IT
You can find antique prints and maps in antique stores and estate sales but we suggest shopping on the Internet. While you are browsing websites, check us out.
Usually framing costs more than the actual print. This is especially true if you take your new print or map to a picture framing shop. Instead, I recommend that you source your frame from an estate sale, garage sale or from an establishment such as the Salvation Army. Make sure that you carry a list of frame sizes that you need in your purse or wallet. The mat is best sourced from your local picture frame shop. I purchased a mat maker and tried making mats myself, but is not easy and mine did not look professional.
YOUR BUDGET & INVESTMENT
If you are collecting these vintage prints and maps to decorate your home, you can end up paying not much more than buying prints that were printed in China at one of the “Mart” stores. Most importantly, the antique art that you choose will be meaningful and will become a “Point of Interest” for your visitors. Your collection should be worth more than you paid and hopefully will increase in value over time. The “Art” that you buy at the Mart store will be worth next to nothing.
We have been selling antique prints and maps since 1974 and have been selling on the Internet since 1998. We have over 17,000 unique prints and maps in over 28 categories for sale on our website www.sandtique-rare-printsandmaps.com.